Press Release
February 15, 2016

Senate to hold forum on proposals
to amend personal income tax law

After successfully holding its first lecture series last November, the Senate will conduct its second lecture series tomorrow (Feb. 16) entitled the "Comparative Assessment of Proposals to Amend Personal Income Tax Law" at the Senator Laurel and Pecson Room, Senate building in Pasay City.

Senate Economic Planning Office Director General Ronald Golding said the holding of the series of forums dubbed the "Centennial Lecture Series" is part of the Senate's activities for the year-long centennial celebration from October 2015 to October 2016.

Golding said Sen. Juan Edgardo "Sonny" Angara, chairman of the Senate Committee on Ways and Means, would open the forum with a message at 9:30 a.m. and Dr. Rosario Manasan, senior researcher of the Philippine Institute for Development Studies (PIDS), would present her papers on the Comparative Assessment of Proposals to Amend Personal Income Tax Law at 9:40 a.m.

Manasan's presentation will be followed by discussions from Dir. Elsa Agustin of the Department of Finance's Fiscal Policy and Rena Manuel, former president of the Planning Office and Tax Management Association of the Philippines (TMAP). Senate Secretary Oscar Yabes will give his closing remarks at the end of the lecture.

The Senate is celebrating its centennial year from October 2015 to October 2016 under Proclamation No. 1091 signed last August 7, 2015 by President Benigno S. Aquino III.

The proclamation calls on all national government offices, government-owned or controlled corporations (GOCCs), and local government units (LGUs), to support and extend "assistance and cooperation to the Senate in the observance of its Centennial year."

"The lecture series is part of our activities for the centennial celebration. We held a forum on the Assessment of Bottom-Up Budgeting (BUB) process for Fiscal Year 2015 last Nov. 5. We plan to hold four more lectures or forums until October this year, the culmination of our centennial anniversary," Golding said.

He said the lectures aim to provide legislators, their staff and the public, a deeper understanding of the pending measures in Congress.

For instance, Golding said, the adjustment of income tax system is a subject of pending bills filed by Senate Pro Tempore Ralph Recto (Senate Bill 716), Sen. Bam Aquino (Senate Bill 1942, Angara (Senate Bill (2149), Representative Miro Quimbo (House Bill 4829) and Representatives Neri Colmenares and Carlos Isagani Zarate (House Bill 5401).

"Bills on the adjustment of the income tax system have been in the legislative mill for many years now. The current bills that were filed on the subject were not approved in the present Congress. Most likely they will be in the agenda of the 17th Congress," he said.

A November 2015 PIDS study showed that the Philippines has one of the highest personal income tax rates among Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) countries.

Golding said they will write a report of the lectures and disseminate them to the Senators' offices as well as other Senate offices. (Pilar S. Macrohon)

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